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>> yeah, knock them over. >> the sharks also in the playoffs tonight in los angeles. a big night for the bay area. on our broadcast tonight, the firestorm in washington. did the irs and the justice department abuse their power? late developments tonight in two growing controversies. spy games, an american caught in moscow with a wig, a wad of cash, and the russians say he also had a letter promising millions to spy for the cia. going public with a very personal decision. angelina jolie has undergone a double mastectomy after a test revealed her high risk of breast cancer. tonight, the questions it's raising for millions of other women. and the legal limit, a big change could be on the way. it concerns how much alcohol you're allowed to drink before getting behind the wheel. you're allowed to drink before getting behind the wheel. "nightly news" begins now. captions paid for by nbc-universal television good evening.
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as a lot of american adults not so fondly remember, the last time the government was found looking into the phone calls of reporters and using the irs for political purposes, it was the nixon era, and while times have changed and circumstances are different, that subject came up at the obama white house today, as the administration now scrambles on several fronts. we begin with the potentially illegal use of the irs to scrutinize some american groups and citizens because of their politics, and in this case because of conservative politics. again, this is just one front we're covering tonight. nbc's lisa myers starts us off live from our washington newsroom. lisa, good evening. >> brian, good evening. today the president's spokesman categorically denied the white house had anything to do with the irs targeting conservati non-profit groups. today's inspector general report will fuel still more questions about what happened.
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>> -- here because you love america! [ cheers ] >> reporter: the report officially confirms what tea party groups and conservatives have said for more than a year, that the irs was targeting them for extra scrutiny. the inspector general's report says beginning in 2010, the irs used inappropriate criteria to single out tea party and other organizations, based upon their names or policy positions when applying for tax exempt status. it said ineffective management allowed improper criteria to stay in place for more than 18 months and resulted in substantial delays on applications and unnecessary information requests. the irs has fixed some of the problems according to the ig, but needs to do more. >> when the irs starts behaving like a rogue agent, that considers itself above the law, we are in truly dangerous territory. >> reporter: in an op-ed today acting irs commissioner steven miller said mistakes were made
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but they were in no way due to any political or partisan motivation. he blamed too many cases and a lack of sensitivity, but there is a firestorm in congress, because miller knew a year ago that the irs had targeted conservative groups and said nothing. >> this is either one of the greatest cases of incompetence that i've ever seen or it was the irs willfully not telling congress the truth. >> reporter: today the attorney general said he's ordered an investigation by the fbi. >> i think as everyone can agree if not criminal, they were certainly outrageous and unacceptable, but we are examining the facts to see if there were criminal violations. >> but republicans are unlikely to accept the obama administration investigating itself. three congressional committees already have planned hearings into what interaction, if any, the irs had with treasury officials or the white house and into whether anyone at the irs has been fired. brian? >> lisa myers in our d.c. newsroom to start us off tonight. lisa, thanks. and now to this other front
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the justice department is defending itself tonight after we learned the feds have tracked more than 20 phone lines used by the associated press, their reporters and editors, including their offices, homes and cell phones, a move that news organizations have called an outrageous and unconstitutional overreach. our justice correspondent pete williams paying us a visit here in our new york studios tonight with that story. pete, good evening. >> brian, good evening to you. this is far from the first time that the justice department has gotten a reporter's telephone records, a power that the courts have upheld, but what makes this difference is the apparent breadth of the records involved, covering phone lines that the ap says were used by scores of its reporters. the justice department insisted that it acted because american lives were at risk and tracked the phone calls of ap reporters and editors because it had no options left to find out who in the government was the source for an ap story about a highly classified effort a year ago to foil a terror plot. >> officials are telling us the
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cia thwarted a plot by an al qaeda branch in yemen to detonate a bomb on a u.s.-bound jetliner. >> reporter: the ap says the government obtained logs of calls from more than 20 phone lines last april and may, including some home and cell numbers and the general switchboard lines of its offices in new york, washington and hartford, connecticut. >> more than 100 journalists for the ap work at the places whose phone numbers and phone records were seized by the justice department. >> reporter: attorney general eric holder said today that he was not involved in the decision to get the phone logs, having take. himself off the leaked case last year to avoid the appearance of a conflict, because he knew about the classified operation before it became public, but he said he's confident the rules were followed in pursuing what he called one of the most serious leaks he's ever seen. >> it put the american people at risk, and that is not hyperbole. it put the american people at risk, and trying to determine who was responsible for that i
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think required very aggressive action. >> reporter: the deputy attorney general, james cole, who did approve getting the phone records, said in a letter it was a last resort, after investigators did more than 550 interviews and reviewed tens of thousands of documents, but first amendment advocates say such a broad effort could chill the ability to learn about wrongdoing. >> the public taxpayer citizens, we all need the information that whistleblowers provide, and to crack down on whistleblowers like this should send a chill throughout the government to anybody who might want to come forward. >> there's no reason to think the phone calls of other news organizations were tracked, and the government did not listen in on these calls. it got the records well after the calls were made. as for who in the government leaked this in the first place, no one has been charged with that, brian. >> pete williams here with us in new york. pete, thank you, as always. let's talk about all of this with moderator of "meet the press" david gregory, also in our d.c. bureau. so, david, it's a lot,
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especially when you begin with benghazi, move on into the iris and now the ap/fbi. i looked up in the cable coverage this afternoon, was asking is this the curse of a second term? >> well, there's some of that and this is a trifecta that really goes to the president's trust that goes to the question of incompetence within the administration. the irs issue stands out to advisers i have talked to in the white house, to outside allies to the president. they say this is so egregious something has to be done. there's frustration, i can tell you, within the administration that more was not done within the treasury department to deal with this a little bit more quickly and this outrage that is being directed toward the white house would like to be reciprocated but some advisers tell me, look, there are limits to what the president can do right away to start firing people, for one. the irs is insulated in a way. why? to protect against the kind of political interference that they say was, in fact, running amok within the agency. so there's going to be more calls from the administration, the white house in particular,
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to take some real tough action here and to be less cautious in the face of all of these issues hitting them at once, brian. >> david gregory on some of the topics we'll be hearing more about this sunday morning, david, thanks. now let's go back to the future. this next story makes it seem as if the old soviet union never went away and the cold war is still going full bore. it's a classic spy story in a way. an american man has been detained in moscow and accused of being a cia officer trying to turn a spy. our report tonight from our chief foreign affairs correspondent andrea mitchell. >> reporter: it was a lead story on russia's state-owned cable news tonight. a u.s. embassy employee supposedly caught spying in moscow, shown being stripped of his disguise, allegedly trying to recruit a russian for the cia. in a scene right out of john lecarre and "the cold war" 29-year-old ryan fogle, a low-level diplomat, allegedly caught with a spy's toolkit, wigs, sunglasses, maps, money, even a letter offering his russian contact up to $1 million
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a year "to discuss your experience, expertise and cooperation," and instructions for opening a gmail account and an address to write. the cia and state department weren't talking. the russians released fogle to the u.s. embassy. he'll probably be sent home. on twitter u.s. ambassador michael mcfaul had no comment. at washington's popular spy museum, a former cia spy says it happens all the time. >> even the disguise material which people have sort of chortled about, i've used disguise so even though it may look sort of corny or sixth grade to people, it can work. >> reporter: tonight the russians call the incident provocative, but u.s. officials don't think it will set back efforts to improve relations, blamed by many for failing to prevent the boston marathon bombing and for the standoff in syria. tonight secretary of state kerry was meeting with his counterpart in sweden, presumably not swapping spy stories.
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andrea mitchell, nbc news, washington. now to the stunning news we woke up to this morning, one of the most famous women in the world, angelina jolie, is going public with a very personal decision, she has revealed she had a preventative double tomyfter a test showed she carries a very rare gene that made it extremely likely, an 87% chance she would develop breast cancer, and increase her risk of ovarian cancer, which killed her mother. tonight her decision and the test that prompted it is raising questions for a lot of women. our report from our chief medical editor dr. nancy snyderman. >> reporter: it is a stunning announcement by one of hollywood's most glamorous leading ladies. oscar winning actress angelina jolie disclosed in today's "new york times" that she had a double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery earlier this year, a decision prompted by family history and genetic testing. jolie wrote, "i carry a faulty
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gene, brca1 which sharply increases my risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer. i decided to be proactive and to minimize the risk as much as i could." the decision, she says was influenced by the death of her own mother, marcheline bertrand, who fought ovarian cancer for ten years and died at the age of 56. 37-year-old jolie and her partner, actor brad pitt have six children. she says she can now assure the family it is unlikely they will lose her to the disease. >> good job, worker. >> reporter: pregnant mother of two, gabriele brett of cleveland made a similar choice. she also had the brca1 gene mutation and underwent a double mastectomy before starting a family. >> being pregnant and not have to worry about getting diagnosed with breast cancer was so great that i wouldn't -- you know, i look back and i wouldn't change a thing. >> reporter: while the tests for brca1 and 2 mutations are simple, a cheek swab or a blood test, they can be expensive, more than $3,000.
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although in some cases a strong family history of breast or ovarian cancer will prompt insurance companies to cover the cost, but doctors caution genetic testing isn't for everyone. >> women who do not have a family history i think should not be overly anxious about this. however, women who have a family history should check with their physician. >> reporter: in jolie's case, making an individual decision based on her information is what the future of personalized medicine is all about. >> she would have a risk of almost 90% of developing breast cancer in her lifetime so this is true medical prevention. this is genomics preventing a very serious disease. >> genetic causes for breast cancer are pretty rare, only 5% to 8%. so to underscore women who should get genetic testing are those with strong family histories, those who have just been diagnosed with cancer, and then sit down and talk about options. in angelina jolie's case,
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surgery, but for a lot of other women watchfulness and medication. >> dr. nancy snyderman in san diego for us tonight, thank you. the fda is recommending patients take a lower dosage of ambien or its generic name zolpidem. they say people who do take ambien to sleep shouldn't drive the next day especially after taking the extended release form of it. the warning says drug levels in the bloodstream can stay high enough to impair concentration and alertness and care should be taken in all activities, including driving. still ahead for us tonight, drinking and driving, and is the legal limit about to change regarding exactly who is allowed behind the wheel under the law. and later jersey boys at the shore, the prince and the governor on the boardwalk.
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federal safety officials are out tonight with a change they'd like to make in the legal limit, lowering what's considered safe for blood alcohol levels when
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behind the wheel. they say they don't expect ts proposal to be popular but they say it's necessary and when this same change was made in europe, the death rate there was cut in half. our report tonight from nbc's tom costello. >> reporter: in colorado, funeral services for police officer kevin denner, killed last week by a driver allegedly driving drunk. just one of nearly 10,000 people who die each year in alcohol-related accidents. 170,000 are injured. >> we can choose to accept the senseless and needless losses or we can choose to act. >> reporter: today, the ntsb urged all 50 states to low are the legal definition of drunk driving from the current blood alcohol level of 0.08 to 0.05, the agency says that's the level at which many drivers' vision can be affected. in maryland officer john romack has seen many drivers when they
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weren't at 0.08. >> whether we're 0.05, 0.06, 0.08 or a 1.2, once it impairs their motorcycles and their judgment, that's where it becomes change russ. >> reporter: alcohol affects everyone differently based on gender, weight and tolerance but on average a 30-year-old male weighing 180 pounds would need to consume just over four beers in an hour to reach a blood alcohol level of 0.05. a 30-year-old female weighing 130 would only have to drink two glasses of wine to hit a bac of 0.05. already more than 100 countries use 0.05 as the legal limit for drunk driving, but the american beverage institute, which represents bars and restaurants, calls the recommendation ludicrous, saying moving from 0.08 to 0.05 would criminalize most responsible behavior. >> most people can have a glass of wine with dinner and not get to 0.05. >> reporter: getting every state to lower its legal dui standard won't be easy. it took 21 years for them to adopt the current standard.
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the ntsb believes up to 800 lives could be saved each year from 0.05 were the law of the land. tom costello, nbc news, washington. we're back in a moment tonight with a high honor for one man who witnessed two of the darkest days in modern u.s. history.
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major tom has returned to ground control. space station commander chris hadfield, who we profiled, the canadian astronaut with the huge internet following is back on earth, landing in kazhakstan after five months in space. next up, it's back home to canada. a big award from the dallas pd today, a lifetime commendation to retired detective jim lavelle, the big man in the cowboy hat in the pulitzer prize winning photograph who was handcuffed to jfk assassin lee harvey oswald when he was shot by jack ruby.
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lavelle survived pearl harbor, joined the dallas pb in 1950. he is 92 years old. show of hands, how many people still know how to change a fan belt? new numbers show a 60-year driving boom in this country is over. driving among members of the millennial generation is down 23%. it's due we're told to a generational preference for walking or public transportation, especially in urban areas, not to mention the price of gas, which we'll use less of if fewer people are driving. and those fees that airlines charge from baggage to switched and canceled flights, all that added up to more than $6 billion last year. that's a record and it's those fees that have restored some airlines to profitability. the whole idea of fees is still relatively new, and they've been climbing quickly. a stunner this week from the u.n. food and agriculture organization. in a new report, they say insects should be considered a healthy, nutritious alternative
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to chicken, pork, fish and beef. the report says they're a sustainable source of protein. we should quickly add while bugs are not for everyone, insects are already in the diet of an estimated 2 billion people worldwide and components are used in things already like food coloring. and finally, it's certainly ruined now. a construction crew in belize needed crushed rock for a road project, so they clawed away at an ancient mayan pyramid, 2,300 years old. they dug away at it with backhoes. a local archaeologist called it ignorance, insensitivity, laziness, said it was like being punched in the stomach. when we come back, the remarkable scene today along the jersey shore. ♪
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finally tonight, we should be honest about this. during its life, the old jet star roller coaster on the pier in seaside heights, new jersey, was small, rickety and harrowing and it died a lonely death, left out in the ocean by hurricane sandy. it's gone now, it was clawed apart and loaded on a barge in an effort to get the place up and open by memorial day.
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today's demolition waited until a special visitor had left town. nbc's stephanie gosk reports tonight on prince harry's visit to the jersey shore. >> reporter: the new jersey crowd gathered early and broke out the union jack. [ cheers and applause ] not every day that british royalty drops in on seaside heights. >> it's fantastic american spirit, everyone getting together and making things right. it's fantastic. really good. >> reporter: new jersey governor chris christie introduced prince harry to some of the emergency workers, the first responders after sandy hit. >> we were here from day one during the storm. we never left here and to see somebody come and recognize what we did and see our town as it's starting to rebuild and grow,
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it's great to see someone come that far to come see us. >> reporter: the palace says prince harry made a point of coming here, after meeting a new jersey native in afghanistan who lost his home in the storm. this was really a tour of two shores, seaside heights, where progress is being made and nearby mantoloking where the recovery has just begun. many feel the devastation never got the attention it deserved. a visit from prince harry helped. >> hopefully the attention will get things moving a lot faster. >> reporter: the boardwalk proved to the prince and everyone else it was back in business. >> yeah! >> first prize right there. >> oh my gosh, i never met a prince before, i don't know what to say. >> reporter: much to the royal delight of two little girls. >> you always think princes are like -- >> reporter: shining armor on a horse. yeah, yeah, i totally get it. >> yeah, and he's really down-to-earth and just wanted to have fun with people, with us, so it was really nice. >> reporter: wherever prince harry goes, an international spotlight follows. for people here, a royal visit also meant a welcome distraction. stephanie gosk, nbc news, seaside heights, new jersey. >> we hope he enjoyed the jersey shore. that's our broadcast on a tuesday night. thank you for being here with us.
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i'm brian williams. we, of course, hope to see you right back here tomorrow evening. right back here tomorrow evening. good night. -- captions by vitac -- with breaking news. good evening everyone i'm jessica aguirre. >> and i'm raj mathai. the first breaking story in south san jose, a woman and two children have been hit by a car near an elementary school. nbc bay area's george kiriyama joins us from the scene near the school. >> reporter: just a terrible scene here in south san jose. a 5-year-old girl is dead. a 2-year-old girl and a woman is
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injured. we have learned that the two girls are sisters and we have just learned that the woman is possibly their aunt but definitely not their mother. a car driving west around bluefield drive around 3:30 this afternoon hit this family as they were crossing the street. one of the children died at the scene. the 2 year old and the woman are at the hospital with nonlife threatening injuries. the driver who hit them stopped. she is at police head quarters talking to investigators. at this point it does not appear alcohol and drugs are factors. as for speed that is something we still have to ask the police. that is the latest here with breaking news in san jose, george kiriyama. >> thank you, george. we are following a story on a school bus. a fight on the bus led to a 16 year old being stabbed. he has been

NBC Nightly News
NBC May 14, 2013 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

News/Business. (2013) New. (CC) (Stereo)

TOPIC FREQUENCY Us 9, Washington 5, U.s. 5, The Irs 4, Nbc 4, Harry 3, Moscow 3, New York 3, Tom Costello 2, Pete Williams 2, Dr. Nancy Snyderman 2, Lisa Myers 2, Lisa 2, Angelina Jolie 2, Ap 2, Stephanie Gosk 2, South San Jose 2, New Jersey 2, Andrea Mitchell 2, George Kiriyama 2
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